Morgan County legislators: High schoolers can tutor younger students, earn credit

Posted by: Wade Coggeshall  | Friday, August 21, 2020

STATEHOUSE (Aug. 21, 2020) – As schools begin the new academic year, an opportunity to fulfill graduation requirements will be available to high school juniors and seniors to tutor younger students, according to Morgan County lawmakers.

State Rep. Peggy Mayfield (R-Martinsville) said students can experience some form of learning loss over summer break, meaning they do not retain some of the lessons they learned the previous school year, but most are typically able to relearn these lessons quickly. However, because students participated in remote- or e-learning due to COVID-19, a recent NWEA report estimates some children could begin the 2020-2021 school year up to nearly a full grade level behind their peers in some subject areas.

"This public health crisis disrupted the end of the last school year and continues to complicate the learning process for many students as they start the new term," Mayfield said. "As we navigate the pandemic, every opportunity to support students should be on the table to help those who may be falling behind academically."

To help bridge this gap, State Rep. Beau Baird (R-Greencastle) said schools can implement the Indiana Department of Education's newly developed Indiana Tutoring Fellowship, which will fulfill the Service-Based Learning Experience under Graduation Pathway Requirement #2.

"Individual instruction is one aspect of education that's been difficult during these trying times," Baird said. "This tutoring program is an effective way for juniors and seniors to earn graduation credits while helping younger students catch up on their studies."

To be eligible to participate in this program, State Rep. John Young (R-Franklin) said students must be a high school junior or senior, maintain at least a 3.0 GPA and be in good behavioral standing. The IDOE recommends tutoring sessions take place virtually, but if students are permitted to meet face-to-face, social distancing must be followed. Tutors will work with students in kindergarten through eighth grade.

"Oftentimes, younger kids feel more comfortable asking another student questions about homework," Young said. "It is critical we provide students the tools they need to learn, and this program is a great opportunity for juniors and seniors to help someone succeed in school while also earning credit for graduation."

Indiana's graduation pathways was established through a 2017 law authored in the Indiana House so students could pursue opportunities that best meet their education and career goals. 

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State Rep. Peggy Mayfield (R-Martinsville) represents House District 60,
which includes portions of Morgan and Monroe counties.
She is the assistant majority floor leader and serves on the
House Ways and Means, Public Policy and Insurance committees.
Click here for a high-resolution photo.

State Rep. Beau Baird (R-Greencastle) represents House District 44, which includes
all of Putnam County and portions of Clay, Morgan, Owen and Parke counties.
Click here to download a high-resolution photo.

State Rep. John Young (R-Franklin) represents House District 47,
which includes portions of Johnson and Morgan counties.
Click here to download a high-resolution photo.